Free vSphere Hypervisor limitations removed!

Last week I ran into another discussion about the hypervisor under a XenApp deployment it had to be free or very cheap. So the customer was thinking about loading Hyper-V below it. Ok can be a viable option but the admins hoped it would be VMware ESX because they know that hypervisor and it has never let them down in the past six years. So I got the question what is possible, can we use the Free vSphere Hypervisor?  I than remembered from VMworld San Francisco 2013 the limitations of the Free vSphere Hypervisor have been lifted.

So now you can use the vSphere Hypervisor 5.5 with:

  • Unlimited number of cores per physical CPU
  • Unlimited number of physical CPUs per host
  • Maximum eight vCPUs per virtual machine
  • But most important the limitation of 32GB RAM per server/host has been removed from the free Hypervisor.

So now you can use it below a XenApp deployment or in a stack where you do not need DRS, HA and vMotion. If you do need a central management solution you can use the Essentials Kit and if you need DRS, HA, vMotion etc. you can use the vSphere 5.5 essentials kit it is for max. 3 servers with 2 physical CPUs per Server.

EssentialsKit edition.png

In Europe the Essentials Kit will cost 690 Euro for 3 years and the Essentials Plus Kit will cost 5.554 euro for 3 years. If you want to have support on your VMware vSphere Hypervisor you can now purchase Per Incident Support for it.


Edwin Weijdema works as an Enterprise Architect at Imtech ICT in the Netherlands. His job is to build bridges between management and the technicians and vice verse. He has many different roles including working as a speaker, trainer, writer, pre-sales consultant, enterprise architect as well as providing risk analysis and responding to concerns and questions posed by his clients. Edwin is a certified VMware VCP 2, 3, 4 & 5, and V(T)SP 3, 4 & 5. In 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013 and 2014 VMware awarded him the VMware vExpert award for blogging and community efforts. In his spare time he likes to relax in a good online game with friends.


  • Edwin

    Limitations on the non writeable APIs still apply to the Free vSphere Hypervisor 5.5, so if you want a backup solution out in the open to do hot backups you cant with the free version. But on a XenApp or non-persistent desktop solution you do not need that. With XenApp use Provisioning Services (PVS) to do the images from a central location.